Did you vote? If you're eligible, don't answer until you have voted until or your polls close.
I stayed up, because it's easier for me to vote early if I stay up than if I get up. Before I went, I reviewed the tentative research results the students at Stanford Law School's Center for Internet and Society came up with for the Center for Citizen Media on the legality of taking a digital camera (like the one on my new phone) into a polling place, which I know that some of you are planning to do. Per their references, it appears to be completely legal to do so in my home state, Missouri ... but remember that if they tell you not to take photographs and you disobey, "creating a public disturbance" inside a polling place is a class 4 election law misdemeanor. I took one picture, myself, here's my report:
- Missouri 63114, Midland Township, Precinct 017. Polling place: 1st Baptist Church of St. John. Time: 6:05am-6:30am. Report: Despite predicted turnout of at least double what we got in the primary, our polling place had one fewer voting machine, a missing touch-screen voting machine. I don't know how much this is going to affect the lines, though, because the longest lines were to use the paper optical-scan ballots. I called in reports to 800-DEM-VOTE (who said they'd get back to me in a few minutes and didn't) and to 866-OUR-VOTE (who referred me to their Missouri report line and they took a report on it). By the way, the Republican "election challengers" from 2004 weren't there this time, or at least, they weren't there yet.
You want predictions? I give up on predictions, the datasets are just too weird, because way too many races fall within the statistical margin of error on the surveys taken. For the last couple of weeks, I've been relying on the New York Times' web page that tracks all survey results and aggregates them. It's making it absolutely clear and unambiguous that, barring massive fraud, one of my predictions from a couple of weeks ago is going to turn out to have been dead wrong. I predicted that on Wednesday, while the Democrats will have picked up seats in both houses of Congress, we would wake up to persistent Republican majorities in both houses and in the governors' seats. At least two of those predictions look to have been wrong. Survey results suggest that the Democrats have 214 of the 218 seats they'd need for a House majority sewn up or very nearly so, leaving them only having to take 4 of the 17 too-close-to-call races to win. That may well be achievable. According to the surveys, it looks like the Democrats have 27 of the 50 governors' seats already sewn up, with another 5 in play.
As for the Senate? Well, as of this morning the Republicans seem to be ahead 49 to 48, with only 3 seats too close to call. But remember, it's worse than that: because Dick Cheney, as Vice President, gets the tie-breaker vote in a 50/50 split, to win control of the Senate the Democrats have to sweep the table, have to go 3 for 3 in the close races. I can't prove that won't happen, but as of this morning it feels like too much to hope for, too unlikely. So I honestly don't know what's going to happen when the votes are (and aren't) counted, and neither does anyone else, which is going to make this an interesting evening, coming up. And possibly an interesting week. Or month.
The night before the election, I went to see Death of a President. The night before that, I went to a private Guy Fawkes Day party to watch V for Vendetta with some friends, half of whom hadn't seen it yet. Yep, I'm gonna end up on a list somewhere. ;-)